REVIEW: HyperX Alloy FPS RGB Keyboard – Brilliant Lighting and Built for Speed
HyperX recently released the latest addition to their gaming hardware range with the HyperX Alloy FPS RGB Gaming Keyboard ($189). A follow up to the iF Design Award-winning Cloud Flight headset and Alloy Elite RBG Keyboard released earlier this year.
This latest release from Hyper X is built for speed, but not necessarily for comfort. However, it looks fantastic with its brilliant RGB lighting.
Like its predecessors, it offers “complete colour customisation”. However, the big draw or potentially a big drawback for some is the Kailh Silver Speed mechanical key switches.
HyperX Alloy FPS RGB Gaming Keyboard is a wired keyboard with a USB charge port and a braided detachable cable that is resistant to wear.
The detachable cable is handy if you are transporting the keyboard often, otherwise, if you are keeping the keyboard in a single setup, it’s not a noticeable feature.
The cable splits the USB attachments about 5 inches away from the end of the cable, which is an annoying distance. As it is braided and fairly sturdy, if you plug in both for an extra boost, you’ll get a weird loop.
It does have an optional 2.0 USB pass-through, but for mobile charging only.
The Alloy FPS RGB has a durable solid steel frame with this has a nice bit of heft (1.1kg) that will ensure that the keyboard doesn’t get pushed around your desk as you are furiously mashing your keys during a shootout.
However, this weight can be annoying for transporting the keyboard, should you need to.
The keyboard looks fantastic, even before you hook it up and see the stunning extra-bright RGB keys with dynamic effects.
The Alloy FPS RGB has a very minimalist design, it only provides space for the keys included.
There is no wrist support which is troublesome for long time gameplay.
Users can adjust the brilliant RGB lighting effects through the integrated function/FN keys. F1, F2, and F3 all correspond to a lighting mode. Function keys can also be used to switch to gaming mode, change the lighting effect, adjust volume, and the RGB brightness level
Three are already loaded onto the keyboard and more profiles can be created and downloaded via HyperX’s NGenuity software.
This software takes a little getting used to, but once you’ve got the hang of it you will most likely spend your time customising your keyboard to your favourite game.
The lighting modes vary by region. The keyboard I used featured colour wave – all colours run over the keyboard like a wave; colour cycle – one colour slowly transitioning to another; and solid blue lighting with the main gaming keys WASD and 1234 in white.
The keys have five lighting levels, the lowest leaves the keyboard without any colour.
Kailh Silver Switches
Departing from the Cherry MX key switches of HyperX’s other keyboards, HyperX has introduced the Kailh Silver Speed mechanical key switches.
These key switches are probably the most dividing feature of the Alloy FPS RGB keyboard.
The Kailh Silver Speed key switches are rated for 70 million keypresses and feature an ultra-light actuation force.
Users barely need to tap the keys in order for the keyboard to register it, or as HyperX say, it offers “Ultra-rapid responsiveness”.
For gamers, this is ideal, especially in FPS (first person shooter games) as your reflexes will be smoother, as you can hit the same button again and again, with extreme rapidity.
This is a gaming keyboard, first and foremost. If you want to use this solely for gaming, then it is an ideal choice.
As a writer and occasional gamer, it’s a requirement that all keyboards that I use deliver a great gaming experience and smooth and effective typing. Here is where the Alloy FPS RGB stumbled.
The Kailh key switches did deliver on speed and were ideal for gaming, however, for everyday typing they were a bit of a nuisance.
Even a little tap of another key will register, meaning there are numerous spelling errors made and accidental keys being hit affecting video play, and typing.
You have to be careful and precise in your typing, or keep an eye on where your fingers are landing at all times, which can be cumbersome and irritating when you have an article due.
However, I can imagine that a light-typer (which I am not) would get more enjoyment out of it and, to be fair, after a week of use, I have found it easier to type on.
This again just reiterates that the keyboard is built for gaming. Unlike many other models on the market – including the HyperX Elite keyboards – it doesn’t really work as an everyday keyboard.
The latest addition to the HyperX family will not set you back as much as their other models, like the Elite range.
The HyperX Alloy FPS RGB Keyboard costs $189, which is the higher end of mid-range, but it delivers on speed and the RGB lighting.
However, big gamers may need to invest in a wrist rest or good gaming pad.
The Alloy FPS RGB delivers an immersive gaming experience with beautiful rainbow backlighting, at a much lower cost than you’d expect for a full-size RGB mechanical keyboard.
However, the key switches are difficult to get the hang of for everyday typing but are ideal for gaming.
It does look great though. For aesthetics alone, I would give it ten out of ten. The RGB backlighting is reflected on the matte black for a brilliant shine and with five brightness levels and numerous profile capabilities, it will look great in a dark room as you are shooting down your foes.
The HyperX Alloy FPS RGB Keyboard is priced at $189 and is available from online and from selected retailers.